Classics for sale: chassis #99999 Ferrari F50
The first ever Ferrari F50 to be made is for sale on AutoClassics, and its no.1 status isn't the only reason it had a place in Ferrari history
The day you take down the poster of the exotic Italian supercar off your bedroom wall is one of the saddest for any petrolhead. So one of the best must be when many years later that supercar comes up for sale and the opportunity to longingly look at it every morning returns. And when it comes to bedroom poster supercars, the Ferrari F50 is the perfect example.
This car was so exciting it got two unveilings, and was the star of the 1995 Geneva Motor Show. The automotive paparazzi had been tracking the development of the car for two years, which took place in the capable of hands of Formula 1 drivers Niki Lauda, Gerhard Berger and Jean Alesi among others, but its reveal still received huge media attention and became the car for poster producers.
Such was its popularity as a piece of art, it was even included on stamps for countries as far away as Afghanistan and Sierra Leone.
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Its looks jarred with some, but to many its aggressive cutaway shape made it more beautiful than any Ferrari design that had gone before it, and it became the Ferrari of the 1990s, especially to the wonderstruck youth.
What makes the Ferrari for sale in AutoClassic's classifieds section so special is not just the fact that it's F50 chassis #1, but that is also known as #99999, the last ever five-digit car to leave the Maranello production line before the company moved on to its 100,000th unit.
The car was reserved for Jacques Swaters, a former racing driver who had driven Ferraris in Formula 1 (in striking 'Belgian racing yellow' colour schemes) and gone to become a successful team manager in sportscars and a Ferrari collector. He stored the F50 in his private collection and presented it at various 'Ferrari Days' until 2007, when he sold it to an American, who continued to display it in public, much to the delight of many had-been teenagers.
Only 502 miles were covered in the car by Swaters, who sold off most of his Ferrari collection a year later. Chassis #99999 was sold on to two more collectors before ending up in its current ownership in New York, where it's also now set to be sold. To attain the price of the vehicle the dealer selling the car must be contacted. Purchase of the car brings more than just the four wheels and the body, with a host of extras that you'd expect from buying a Ferrari.
There's a Ferrari Classiche certification/Red Book and the car is complete with original accessories: Hardtop with anvil case, books, fitted factory luggage, serial numbered key fob, serial-numbered shop manuals, a parts books with microfiche as well as a large file comprising of additional documentation, literature and ephemera.
None of these make the car run though, and the official Ferrari Franchise service that it received this year that is probably the most valuable individual feature that the sale has to boast. The service itself covered fluids, battery, tires and fuel bladders, the car now now has a stainless steel Tubi muffler (with the original factory muffler still purchasable within the sale).
It's one of the most iconic Ferrari supercars of all time, one of the most important Ferrari chassis made in recent times, and a car with superb provenance and history.
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